In part one of this series I talked about the sources of anger and in part two I talked about identifying what triggers your anger. In this final blog, I’m going to talk about how to conquer your anger.
Before we begin to conquer our anger, we must admit that we’re angry, that it exists, and understand what triggered it. Another part of the process is to recognize that no one else is to blame for our anger. We’re the ones that created it, who feel it, and only we, ourselves, can figure out how to conquer it.
It really is best to talk about it.
When addressing anger with my clients, I start by asking them what it is about a particular person or situation that makes them angry – this helps us identify the triggers. We explore this in two ways:
- Looking at what behaviors other people are exhibiting to understand what external triggers exist
- Exploring the individual’s beliefs and behaviors to understand what internal triggers might exist
Once we’ve identified these, we can start breaking them down to figure out how to conquer them.
Let’s look at an example …
One of my client’s, a Director of Marketing, would get triggered when colleagues from functions outside of marketing criticized her/her team’s marketing programs. Together we recognized this was an external trigger. Then, as we started to dive deeper, we uncovered an internal trigger. We learned she didn’t believe that people outside the marketing function should have an opinion about marketing. Her belief was non-marketing people don’t have the training, experience or education in marketing so they shouldn’t make judgments about marketing programs.
Sometimes you just need to think about it.
We wanted to dig into her belief and understand how true it really is that people outside the marketing department shouldn’t have an opinion about the marketing efforts in the organization.
After we deeply explored this, my client concluded that it is in fact OK for non-marketing colleagues to express their perspective on marketing efforts because their bonuses are tied to revenue generated by the marketing programs. She came to see that if her colleagues were going to be held accountable by what the marketing programs delivered, they should at least be able to have and share a perspective on them.
In this case, for my client to conquer her anger, she needed to rethink her personal belief. Once she did this her anger dissipated.
The bottom line
If you want to conquer your anger, the best things to do are:
- Identify your external and internal triggers, explore them and understand what it is about them that drives you to anger
- Think about what you might need to accept or how you may want to change your thinking so you can move beyond the anger
- Determine what you are willing to change or modify about your thinking and make it happen
If you’re finding yourself experiencing anger in any of the many ways it can show up (frustration, annoyance, betrayal, disrespect etc.) know I’m available for 1:1 coaching to help you through it – you can schedule your complimentary coaching call here.